It has been revealed this week that Labour’s John McDonnell called for British nationals who served in the Israel Defense Forces to be stripped of their British citizenship

MCDONNELL CALLED FOR ANYONE WHO FOUGHT FOR ISRAELI DEFENSE FORCES TO BE STRIPPED OF BRITISH CITIZENSHIP

McDonnell called for anyone who fought for Israeli Defense Forces to be stripped of British citizenship
It has been revealed this week that Labour’s John McDonnell called for British nationals who served in the Israel Defense Forces to be stripped of their British citizenship, showing his completely warped view on Israel.
The news comes as the country debates whether an ISIS member should be allowed back into the country or stripped of her citizenship, something the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t think should happen. Corbyn’s position is at odds with the vast majority of the country.
John McDonnell to then Home Secretary Theresa May in July 2014 challenging her to strip any British citizens who served in the Israeli Defence Force of their British citizenship. McDonnell writes:

“Will you be warning any British citizens considering engagement with the IDF that, in line with established British Government practice (e.g. the deprivation of British citizenship from, to date, at least 40 UK passport holders who have been involved in the Syrian civil war), such engagement may put their British citizenship in jeopardy?”

It turns out his number two is in favour of stripping people of their citizenship, not if they are part of a terrorist organisation, but only if they have served in the IDF. This is not surprising as McDonnell does not like Israel. Here he is accusing Israel of carrying out genocide.
Guido Fawkes reports:
Just hours after Jeremy Corbyn said of ISIS bride Shamima Begum: “Taking somebody’s citizenship away is not the right thing to do. I think she should be brought back,” Guido can reveal the letter from John McDonnell to then Home Secretary Theresa May in July 2014 challenging her to strip any British citizens who served in the Israeli Defence Force of their British citizenship. McDonnell writes:
“Will you be warning any British citizens considering engagement with the IDF that, in line with established British Government practice (e.g. the deprivation of British citizenship from, to date, at least 40 UK passport holders who have been involved in the Syrian civil war), such engagement may put their British citizenship in jeopardy?”
McDonnell states that he wrote the letter in response to this article by Robert Fisk, calling for any Brits who volunteered for the IDF to be questioned by police when they returned from Israel. McDonnell went much further, suggesting that Brits volunteering for the IDF should be classed as“terrorists” as well as being deprived of their citizenship. The hard left just can’t get over their Israel obsession…
Incredibly, the letter was still publicly posted on McDonnell’s website until at least June 2017, almost two years after he became Shadow Chancellor. McDonnell has since deleted the letter, but the internet never forgets
Corbyn’s position on Begum’s citizenship is deeply unpopular with the public but did at least appear principled – it is looking a lot less principled now that it emerges that his right-hand man was in favour of stripping Brits of their citizenship for fighting for the UK’s main ally in the Middle East.McDonnell’s position appears to be that Britons with dual Israeli nationality fighting to defend the Israeli state should be stripped of their nationality yet their Islamic State terrorist enemies in the same position should not…
Read McDonnell’s letter in full below:

Dear Home Secretary,
I have provided below a link to an article written by Robert Fisk, the much respected journalist and expert on the Middle East.
Here is the link to the Robert Fisk piece:
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/its-not-just-radicalised-islamists–what-about-foreign-fighters-who-flock-to-the-idf-9634260.html
You will see that in this article he raises the question of the possibility of British passport holders fighting in the Israeli military or on behalf of the Israeli state in recent conflicts.
I am aware of the Government’s policy of detaining and prosecuting those British citizens travelling to fight in the current Middle East conflicts.
I am writing to ask if you are aware of how many British citizens are currently fighting with, or are intending to join, the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) in and around the Gaza Strip? Will you be making the necessary arrangements to assess the numbers involved?
Will you in your capacity as Home Secretary be advising all British citizens publicly that engagement with the IDF in the current onslaught on the population of Gaza puts them at strong risk of being held personally responsible for the war crimes currently being committed in the form of indiscriminate bombing, shelling, or firing that knowingly risks the lives of non-combatants, and the imposition of collective punishment, all of which are unlawful in international law?
Will you be explaining to them that association with those who are intentionally targeting civilians for political ends, or participation in such acts, would involve them in an association with or engaged in, the perpetration of acts that meet the statutory definition of terrorism in the UK?
Will you be warning any British citizens considering engagement with the IDF that, in line with established British Government practice (e.g. the deprivation of British citizenship from, to date, at least 40 UK passport holders who have been involved in the Syrian civil war), such engagement may put their British citizenship in jeopardy?
Given the seriousness of the current situation in Gaza and the apparent escalation of the Israeli attacks on Palestinians, I urge you to address these questions promptly so that any British citizen currently participating or planning to participate in these attacks is warned of the potential consequences and thus may be deterred from acting in this way.
Yours
John McDonnell MP

Original Article: 
Note: Cufi is a Zionist Christian organization and a strong supporter of Israel 
https://www.cufi.org.uk/news/mcdonnell-called-for-anyone-who-fought-for-israeli-defense-forces-to-be-stripped-of-british-citizenship

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A Response To The Alan Dershowitz “Challenge” Written With The Blood Of The Dead & Dying

Renegade Editor’s Note: I usually do not like criticizing Israel as being “racist” and “apartheid” as it gives segregation a bad name. I prefer to call Israel out as being a genocidal terrorist state, but it is true that they practice the worst forms of racism and apartheid. Israel should not be held up as an example for us to emulate, as people like “white Zionist” Richard Spencer like to do.

By John Wear

This article addresses the personal challenge retired Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz laid down for the critics of Israel and the establishment, by Israeli leaders, of a racist nation set up exclusively for Jews. The reader should keep in mind two additional considerations. First, the personal choices Dershowitz has made as a legal defender.

Controversy continues over allegations Dershowitz, Prince Andrew, Bill Clinton and others may have participated in convicted pedophile Jeffery Epstein’s activities. The legal maneuvers are impressive, Dershowitz provided his friend Epstein with legal assistance.
Dershowitz has represented Harvey Wienstein’s company Miramax to appeal crass films being rated not suitable for under 17 year olds. Dershowitz also tried to appeal the strict rating for a vile film called “Kids” which portrays the exploits of a youth who deflowers underage girls and gets exposed to AIDS. Aside from providing pedophile Epstein with legal assistance, Dershowtiz represented rapist Mike Tyson, as well as convicted armed robber but not wife killer OJ Simpson. Dershowitz also defends clients against pornography censorship. He calls Mike Tyson “a real mensch” and a nice, gentle man. His elite circle includes Robert M. Morgenthau who’s father authored the genocidal Morgenthau Plan inflicted on Germany post WWII.

The second factor is the history of Jewish terrorism against British officials and soldiers that commenced while Britain was fighting WWII to liberate Jewish people from the “Nazi” regime. The following video of a 15 minute speech is highly informative for those readers unfamiliar with this history. Jewish terrorists did not confine their activities to the Middle East, they even mailed bombs to British officials in England. Meanwhile, Jewish-American film producer Ben Hecht who was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame proclaimed:

I have a holiday in my heart every time a British soldier is killed.”

The British had to be evicted from Palestine so the Palestinians could then also be evicted from Palestine, by any means necessary.

Paice and Martin were kidnapped by the Irgun, a Zionist terror group whose leader Menachem Begin later became Prime Miniser of Israel. They were held for eighteen days in bestial conditions, tortured and finally murdered. Their bodies were left hanging in a eucalyptus grove near the Palestinian town of Netanya, where a mine was planted. This mine exploded when British soldiers tried to cut down the bodies of their brothers for a respectful burial. Source
An Answer to Alan Dershowitz’s Challenge

Retired Harvard Law professor Alan Dershowitz frequently challenges critics of Israel with the following:

Name a single country in the history of the world, faced with threats comparable to those faced by Israel, that has a better record of human rights, compliance with the rule of law or seeking to minimize civilian casualties.”[1]

This article will answer Dershowitz’s challenge.

Ethnic Cleansing of Palestinians

Israel was formed by the ethnic cleaning of the indigenous Palestinian population. There were 600,000 Jews and 1.3 million Palestinians in Palestine in December 1947. Jews owned less than 7% of the land, and almost all of the cultivated land was owned by Palestinians. Because of this demographic and geographical balance, the Palestinians regarded any plan which did not allow them to decide their future as being unacceptable and immoral.[2]

The United Nations decided to appease Jewish leader David Ben-Gurion by allowing an unlimited immigration of Jews and granting 55% of Palestine’s land to the Jewish state. The Jewish community knew that the Palestinians would reject such an unfair agreement when it agreed to this U.N. plan. Israeli propaganda, however, has repeatedly used its acceptance of the U.N. plan and the Palestinian rejection to indicate Israel’s peaceful intentions towards the Palestinians.[3]

The Arab world did not have the military means to stop Zionist military aggression. Three months before Arab armies entered Palestine in May 1948, the Zionist military forces began to ethnically cleanse Palestinians from their houses, fields and land. In the process, Zionist military forces added another 23% of Palestine’s land to the 55% granted to them by the U.N. Israel as a state covered almost 80% of Palestine by January 1950.[4]

New documents released in 1998 from the archives of the Israel Defense Forces prove the planned massive, intentional expulsions of Palestinians.[5] The Zionist takeover of Palestine was aided by detailed files of every Palestinian village prepared by Haganah, the main Zionist underground militia in Palestine. These files, which included aerial photographs indicating the best access and entry points to each village as well as the number of weapons held in each home, enabled the Zionists to know how to best attack Palestinian villages.[6]

There were at least 33 massacres of Palestinian villages during Israel’s “War of Independence.” Zionist forces were larger and better equipped than their opponents, and by the end of the war over 750,000 Palestinians were ruthlessly expelled from their homes.[7] Israeli historian Tom Segev writes,

Israel was born of terror, war, and revolution, and its creation required a measure of fanaticism and of cruelty.”[8]

Entire cities and hundreds of villages in Israel were left empty and repopulated with new Jewish immigrants. The Palestinians lost everything they had and became destitute refugees, while the Jewish immigrants stole the Palestinians’ property and confiscated everything they needed.[9] Israeli historian Ilan Pappé writes that the Zionist takeover of Palestine “was a clear-cut case of an ethnic cleansing operation, regarded under international law today as a crime against humanity.”[10]

Norman Finkelstein writes:

The injustice inflicted on Palestinians by Zionism was manifest and, except on racist grounds, unanswerable: their right to self-determination, and perhaps even to their homeland, was being denied.”[11] Finkelstein concludes that “the scholarly consensus is that Palestinians were ethnically cleansed in 1948.”[12]

Israel claimed that the majority of Palestinian refugees voluntarily fled and were not expelled. However, Israel did not allow the Palestinians to return to their homes as demanded by a U.N. resolution shortly after the 1948 war. The State of Israel was clearly founded through the ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian inhabitants.[13]

Injustice Continues

Israeli leaders established a racist nation set up exclusively for Jews. A Palestinian who was born within the boundaries of what is now Israel cannot return to his homeland and become a citizen of Israel. By contrast, a Jew born outside of Israel can immigrate to Israel and be granted instant citizenship with numerous benefits. Israel has segregated housing areas, schools and recreational facilities where Palestinians are not allowed. The legality of marriage between Jews and Palestinians is also not recognized by Israeli law.[14]

The ethnic cleansing of Palestinians continued in June 1967 after the Six-Day War. Israel conquered and occupied the West Bank from Jordan, the Gaza Strip from Egypt, and the Golan Heights from Syria. These territories are still occupied by Israel today.[15] As an ethnocentric state, Israel denies voting rights and other political and civil liberties to the more than 4 million Palestinians in the occupied territories because of their non-Jewish ethnicity.[16]

Approximately 300,000 Palestinians fled or were driven into exile as Israel conquered the West Bank and Gaza. Hundreds of villages were systematically razed, and over 2,000 Palestinian homes were demolished or sealed without charges or trial. The Israeli government confiscated fully 50% of the land and 80% of the water reserves in these territories. Approximately 100,000 Jews settled in the West Bank and Gaza to replace the exiled Palestinians.[17] These actions were in violation of U.N. Security Resolution 242, which demanded that Israel withdraw from all of the occupied territories in 1967.[18]

Palestinian Gaza has been turned into a massive prison ghetto. Surrounded by electronic fences and military posts, tightly sealed from the outside world, Palestinians in Gaza are forced to live in extreme poverty. Israeli linguistics professor Tanya Reinhart wrote in 2002:

What we are witnessing in the occupied territories—Israel’s penal colonies—is the invisible and daily killing of the sick and wounded who are deprived of medical care, of the weak who cannot survive in the new poverty conditions, and of those who are approaching starvation.”[19]

Israeli leaders proceeded to implement throughout the West Bank their model of control perfected in Gaza. Since May 2002, Israel has been constructing a wall in the West Bank which will make this system of control a reality when completed. Along the route under construction, Israel is dispossessing Palestinian farmers of their land and pushing them into small enclaves between fences and walls. Eventually Palestinians in the West Bank will be surrounded on all sides, as is currently the case in Gaza.[20]

January 25, 2018

The Israeli Knesset has also enacted numerous laws in recent years that discriminate against Palestinians. The Nakba Law of 2009, for example, stipulated that whoever would commemorate Israel’s day of independence as a day of mourning would be arrested. This law was slightly revised under international pressure: arrest was replaced by the denial of public funding to any entity that commemorates the Nakba. Since virtually all Palestinian institutions and homes remember and commemorate the Nakba, this law is highly discriminatory against Palestinians.[21]

The Times of Israel reported how Israel will be an ethnostate: they’ll simply hand the “wrong-color” refugees to white European nations because “Diversity Is Our Strength”.
The Times of Israel reported how Israel will be an ethnostate: they’ll simply hand the “wrong-color” refugees to white European nations because “Diversity Is Our Strength”.
These Jews have the “Right of Return” to the racist Ethnostate of Israel should their increasingly diverse host-home nations become uncomfortable. None of these nations are permitted a referendum on the uncontrolled intake of “refugees” who cross multiple countries before claiming refugee status.
Israel’s Human Rights Record

Palestinians have faced ongoing terrorism from Israel in times of both peace and war. A partial list of the massacres committed by Israel against Palestinians include: Sharafat Massacre, Kiby Massacre, Kafr Qasem Massacre, Al-Sammou Massacre, the Sabra and Chatila Massacre, Oyon Qara Massacre, Al-Aqsa Mosque Massacre, the Ibrahimi Mosque Massacre, the Qana Massacre, and the Jabalia Massacre. Israel also bombed and invaded Lebanon in the 1980s, with estimates of civilian casualties exceeding 15,000.[22]

Israel has assassinated hundreds of Palestinian leaders. Many of these Palestinian leaders had never been associated with violence or terror of any kind; they were simply writers or clerics who by their words inspired their countrymen to seek freedom. The assassinations of Palestinian leaders have often also killed innocent bystanders.[23]

Tens of thousands of Palestinians have been tortured in Israeli jails. A Jewish human rights group in Israel confirmed in a 60-page report that 85% of Palestinian prisoners undergo torture while in custody. Many thousands of these prisoners have died while in Israeli custody.[24]

The U.N. Committee Against Torture last year cited continued complaints of torture by the Israeli Security Agency and Israel’s refusal to implement the U.N. Convention Against Torture in occupied Palestinian territories.[25]

How all analysis, debate and discussion is ruthlessly suppressed.

The Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly passed a resolution in January 2017 condemning Israel’s unlawful killings of Palestinians in the so-called buffer zone between the Gaza Strip and Israel. The resolution was based on a report compiled by Swedish Assembly member Eva-Lena Jansson, which states:

Cases of the deliberate fatal shooting of individuals who posed no imminent danger to life amounts to an appalling pattern of apparently systematic unlawful killings…It is estimated that over 12,620 houses were totally destroyed [in Gaza] and 6,455 severely damaged. 17,650 families or about 100,000 persons were displaced.”[27]

The report says that Gaza has become so uninhabitable that many of its residents have joined the influx of refugees into Europe. The resolution called for an end to Israel’s blockade on Gaza, voicing alarm over the deteriorating humanitarian situation in the impoverished area.[28]

Alan Dershowitz writes that Israel’s record on human rights is “generally superb.”[29] However, Israel’s human rights record has been monitored by a multitude of independent organizations with autonomous research and field staff. Contrary to Dershowitz’s claim, all of these human rights organizations consistently document egregious human rights violations on the part of Israel.[30]

Norman Finkelstein writes:

Either mainstream human rights organizations and independent experts have engaged in a vast anti-Semitic conspiracy to defame Israel, or Dershowitz has egregiously misrepresented the factual record. No third possibility exists.”[31]

Did Dershowitz and Obama discuss how to ‘sell’ Open Borders for America while ethnically cleansing Israel?

Amnesty International summarizes Israel’s human rights record in a recent report:

In the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, Israeli forces committed unlawful killings of Palestinian civilians, including children, and detained thousands of Palestinians who protested against or otherwise opposed Israel’s continuing military occupation, holding hundreds in administrative detention. Torture and other ill-treatment remained rife and were committed with impunity. The authorities continued to promote illegal settlements in the West Bank, and severely restricted Palestinians’ freedom of movement, further tightening restrictions amid an escalation of violence from October, which included attacks on Israeli civilians by Palestinians and apparent extrajudicial executions by Israeli forces. Israeli settlers in the West Bank attacked Palestinians and their property with virtual impunity. The Gaza Strip remained under an Israeli military blockade that imposed collective punishment on its inhabitants. The authorities continued to demolish Palestinian homes in the West Bank and inside Israel, particularly in Bedouin villages in the Negev/Naqab region, forcibly evicting their residents. They also detained and deported thousands of African asylum seekers, and imprisoned Israeli conscientious objectors.[32]

Norman Finkelstein’s new book on Gaza is a meticulous account of Israel’s crimes.
Israeli Violence and Oppression

Israel’s occupation and its settlements have been maintained through the organized and systematic use of violence. The rights of Palestinians have been ignored. Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir justified Israel’s violent policies when she infamously stated in 1969 that “[t]here were no such things as Palestinians”and asserted,

It was not as though there was a Palestinian people in Palestine considering itself as a Palestinian people and we came and threw them out and took their country away from them. They did not exist.”[33]

Living in a moral universe in which Israeli Jews are the permanent victims and Palestinians are invisible allows Israel to justify almost any measure.[34] Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin declared in the Knesset after Israel’s invasion of Lebanon, “No one, anywhere in the world, can preach morality to our people.” A similar statement was included in a resolution adopted by Begin’s cabinet after massacres in Palestinian refugee camps on the outskirts of Beirut.[35]

The Israeli military’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza has resulted in arbitrary killings and destruction on a daily basis. Amira Hass wrote in January 2005 that the Israeli army

controls Gaza through its fortified positions, which dominate densely populated residential areas; it controls Gaza with its airborne drones and their unceasing buzzing; the bulldozers that have not ceased demolishing, flattening, exposing, uprooting for the last four years; the helicopters that fire missiles; the military orders that turn roads and farmlands and half the coastline into areas ‘prohibited to Palestinians’ so that any Palestinian using them ends up dead; orders that close all the passages into Gaza; the tanks that fire into civilian neighborhoods with…tank shells and other forms of munitions with a frequency that makes it impossible to count them…”[36]

Ilan Pappé writes in 2017 that what the Israeli army has been doing in the Gaza Strip since 2006 can appropriately be called an incremental genocide. Israeli military operations have been steadily escalating in every area. Ilan Pappé writes:

Firstly, there was the disappearance of the distinction between “civilian” and “non-civilian” targets: the senseless killing had turned the population at large into the main target of the operation. Secondly, there was the escalation in the employment of every possible killing machine the Israeli army possesses. Thirdly, there was the conspicuous rise in the number of casualties. Finally, and most importantly, the operations gradually crystallized into a strategy, indicating the way Israel intends to solve the problem of the Gaza Strip in the future: through a measured genocidal policy. The people of the Strip, however, continued to resist. This led to further genocidal Israeli operations, but still today a failure to reoccupy the region.[37]

Conclusion

The historical record indicates that Israel is a racist, apartheid ethnostate formed through the ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian population. Israel has an atrocious human rights record, has violated more U.N. resolutions than any other country in the U.N.[38], and has mass murdered Palestinian civilians with impunity. The so-called threats to Israel are a result of Israel’s violent and discriminatory policies, and not because Israel is surrounded by inherently dangerous or violent neighbors.

The answer to Alan Dershowitz’s challenge is that Israel’s human rights record, noncompliance with the rule of law, and violence against the Palestinian civilian population is among the worst in world history. The more appropriate challenge would be to name a country in the history of the world, surrounded by neighbors who desire peace, with a worse record than Israel of human rights violations, noncompliance with the rule of law, or failing to minimize civilian casualties.


This article originally appeared on Wear’s War.

ENDNOTES

Buy Germany’s War

[1] http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Debating-against-BDS-and-winning-431921.

[2] Pappé, Ilan, The Forgotten Palestinians: A History of the Palestinians in Israel, New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2011, pp. 16-17.

[3] Ibid., p. 17.

[4] Ibid., pp. 17-18.

[5] Pappé, Ilan, The Idea of Israel: A History of Power and Knowledge, London: Verso, 2014, p. 277.

[6] Pappé, Ilan, The Forgotten Palestinians: A History of the Palestinians in Israel, New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2011, p. 15.

[7] Weir, Alison, Against Our Better Judgement: The Hidden History of How the U.S. was Used to Create Israel, 2014, p. 58.

[8] Segev, Tom, The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust, New York: Hill and Wang, p. 63.

[9] Ibid., pp. 161-162.

[10] Pappé, Ilan, The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, Oxford: Oneworld, 2007, p. xiii.

[11] Finkelstein, Norman G., Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History, Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2005, p. 8.

[12] Ibid. p. 5.

[13] Reinhart, Tanya, The Road Map to Nowhere: Israel/Palestine Since 2003, London: Verso, 2006, pp. 1-2.

[14] Duke, David, Jewish Supremacism: My Awakening to the Jewish Question, 2ndedition, Mandeville, LA: Free Speech Press, 2007, pp. 213-214.

[15] Reinhart, Tanya, Israel/Palestine: How to End the War of 1948, New York: Seven Stories Press, 2002, p. 8.

[16] Abunimah, Ali, The Battle for Justice in Palestine, Chicago: Haymarket Books, 2014, p. 195.

[17] Finkelstein, Norman G., The Rise and Fall of Palestine: A Personal Account of the Intifada Years, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1996, p. 52.

[18] Pappé, Ilan, Ten Myths About Israel, London: Verso, 2017, p. 77.

[19] Reinhart, Tanya, Israel/Palestine: How to End the War of 1948, New York: Seven Stories Press, 2002, pp. 18, 175-176.

[20] Reinhart, Tanya, The Road Map to Nowhere: Israel/Palestine Since 2003, London: Verso, 2006, pp. 157-160.

[21] Pappé, Ilan, The Idea of Israel: A History of Power and Knowledge, London: Verso, 2014, pp. 272-273.

[22] Duke, David, Jewish Supremacism: My Awakening to the Jewish Question, 2ndedition, Mandeville, LA: Free Speech Press, 2007, pp. 219, 222-223.

[23] Ibid., p. 225.

[24] Ibid., p. 226.

[25] https://www.rt.com/news/374923-israel-torture-methods-interrogation/?utm_source=browser&utm_medium=aplication_chrome&utm_campaign=chrome.

[26] Reinhart, Tanya, Israel/Palestine: How to End the War of 1948, New York: Seven Stories Press, 2002, p. 175.

[27] http://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2017/01/25/507659/Israel-Gaza-Council-of-Europe-Parliamentary-Assembly.

[28] Ibid.

[29] Dershowitz, Alan, The Case for Israel, New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2003, p. 204.

[30] Finkelstein, Norman G., Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History, Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 2005, pp. 91-92.

[31] Ibid., p. 223.

[32] https://www.amnesty-international.be/sites/default/files/bijlagen/pol1025522016english.pdf.

[33] Abunimah, Ali, One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse, New York: Metropolitan Books, 2006, pp. 48, 107.

[34] Ibid., 141.

[35] Segev, Tom, The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust, New York: Hill and Wang, p. 399.

[36] Reinhart, Tanya, The Road Map to Nowhere: Israel/Palestine Since 2003, London: Verso, 2006, pp. 58-59, 157.

[37] Pappé, Ilan, Ten Myths About Israel: London, Verso, 2017, pp. 130, 133.

[38] http://www.annainthemiddleeast.com/whatcanyou/boycott/index.html.

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mtl cotler tribute 18c70

Hypocrisy, lying, disdain for the victims of ‘our’ policies and other forms of rot run deep in Canadian political culture.

The latest example is former prime minister Paul Martin nominating Irwin Cotler for the Nobel Peace Prize, which has been applauded by the likes of Bernie Farber, Michael Levitt and Anthony Housefather.

This supposed promoter of peace and former Liberal justice minister has devoted much of his life to defending Israeli violence and has recently promoted war on Iran and regime change in Venezuela.

In a story titled “Irwin Cotler’s  daughter running with Ya’alon, Gantz” the Jerusalem Post recently reported that Michal Cotler-Wunsh was part of the Israel Resilience and Telem joint election list. The story revealed that Irwin Cotler has been an unofficial adviser to Moshe Ya’alon for years. Former Chief of Staff of the Israeli military and defence minister between 2013 and 2016, Ya’alon recently boasted about his role in setting up the West Bank colony of Leshem and said Israel “has a right to every part of the Land of Israel.” In 2002 Ya’alon told Haaretz, “the Palestinian  threat harbors cancer-like attributes that have to be severed. There are all kinds of solutions to cancer. Some say it’s necessary to amputate organs but at the moment I am applying chemotherapy.”

Ya’alon’s Telem party is in a formal electoral alliance with Israel Resilience, which is led by Benny Gantz, a former Israeli army chief. To launch his party’s campaign, Gantz released a video boasting about his role in the killing of 2,200 Palestinians in Gaza in the summer of 2014. It actually notes that “parts of Gaza were sent back to the Stone Age.” Gantz faces a war crimes case in the Netherlands for his role in the deaths of civilians in Gaza.

Cotler has described illegal Israeli colonies in the West Bank as “disputed territories” and the Canadian lawyer justified Israel’s 2006 war on Lebanon that left 1,200 dead. He savagely attacked  Richard Goldstone after the South African judge led a UN investigation of Israeli war crimes during operation Cast Lead, which left 1,400 dead in Gaza in 2008–09. Cotler called for the removal of Richard Falk as UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories and William Schabas from his position on the UN Human Rights Council’s International Commission of Inquiry into the killings in Gaza in 2014. Alongside attacking these three (Jewish) lawyers tasked with investigating human rights violations, Cotler promotes the notion of the “new anti-Semitism” to attack critics of Israeli policy.

In an indication of the unquestioning depths of his support for Israeli crimes, Cotler has repeatedly criticized his own party and government’s (mild) expressions of support for Palestinian rights. In May Cotler tweeted his “regret [of a] Canadian Government statement” criticizing Israeli snipers for shooting thousands of peaceful protesters, including Canadian doctor Tarek Loubani, in Gaza. In 2000 Cotler complained when the government he was a part of voted for a UN Security Council resolution calling on Israel to respect the rights of Palestinian protesters. “This kind of resolution, which singled out Israel for discriminatory and differential treatment and appeared to exonerate the Palestinians for their violence,” Cotler said, “would tend to encourage those who violently oppose the peace process as well as those who still seek the destruction of Israel.”

In 2002 a half dozen activists in Montréal occupied Cotler’s office to protest the self-described ‘human rights lawyer’s’ hostility to Palestinians. Cotler’s wife, Ariela Zeevi, was a“close confidant” of Likud founder Menachem Begin when the arch anti-Palestinian party was established to counter Labour’s dominance of Israeli politics.

‘Canada’s Alan Dershowitz’ has also attacked Iran incessantly. He supported the Stephen Harper government’s move to break off diplomatic relations with Tehran in 2012 and pushed to remove the MEK, which is responsible for thousands of Iranian deaths, from Canada’s terrorist list. As a member of the advisory board of “United Against Nuclear Iran”, Cotler opposed the P5+1Iran Nuclear Agreement. Recently, he called for Canada to invoke the Magnitsky Act to “impose sanctions in the form of travel bans and asset freezes” on Iranian officials.

As well as promoting US/Israel propaganda about Iran, Cotler criticized Hugo Chavez’s government since at least 2009 when Venezuela broke off diplomatic relations with Israel in response to killings in Gaza. In recent weeks Cotler has disparaged Venezuela’s government in a number of articles, including a National Post story headlined “Canadian unions helped fund delegation that gave glowing review of Venezuela election widely seen as illegitimate.” Cotler was quoted saying, “the notion that free and fair elections could possibly be taking place when you not only criminalize those who are on the opposition … but when you don’t have any allowance for expressions of freedom of speech, assembly, association and the like, simply is a non-sequitur.” But, as Dave Parnas wrote in response, “for two weeks we have been seeing pictures of streets filled with people who assembled, associated and spoke freely against President Nicolás Maduro.”

Cotler pushed for Canada to request the International Criminal Court investigate Venezuela’s government. Cotler was one of three “international experts” responsible for a 400-page Canadian-backed Organization of American States (OAS) report on rights violations in Venezuela that recommended referring Venezuela to the ICC. At a press conference in May to release the report, Cotler said Venezuela’s “government itself was responsible for the worst ever humanitarian crisis in the region.” As this author wrote at the time: “Worse than the extermination of the Taíno and Arawak by the Spanish? Or the enslavement of five million Africans in Brazil? Or the 200,000 Mayans killed in Guatemala? Or the thousands of state-murdered ‘subversives’ in Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil?”

For four years Cotler has been working with Juan Guaidó’s “ultra right wing” Voluntad Popular party to oust Nicolas Maduro’s government. In May 2017 Cotler helped bring Lilian Tintori, wife of Voluntad Popular leader Leopoldo López, to meet the Prime Minister and opposition leaders. The Guardian recently reported on Tintori’s role in building international support for the slow-motion coup attempt currently underway in Venezuela. Tintori acted as an emissary for Lopez who couldn’t travel to Ottawa because he was convicted of inciting violence during the deadly “guarimbas” protests  in 2014. A series of news outlets have reported that Lopez is the key Venezuelan organizer in the plan to anoint Guaidó interim president.

Cotler joined Lopez’s legal team in early 2015. At that time the Venezuelan and international media repeated the widely promulgated description of Cotler as Nelson Mandela’s former lawyer (a Reuters headline noted, “Former Mandela lawyer to join defence of Venezuela’s jailed activist”). In response, South Africa’s Ambassador to Venezuela, Pandit Thaninga Shope-Linney, said, “Irwin Cotler was not Nelson Mandela’s lawyer.” For his part, Nelson Mandela mentions a number of lawyers (he was one) in his biography but Cotler’s name seems absent.

Cotler’s human rights credentials are a sham. He is a vicious anti-Palestinian who aggressively criticizes enemy states such as Venezuela, China, Russia and Iran while largely ignoring rights violations committed by Canada and the US.

For those appalled by the idea of Cotler receiving the Nobel Peace Prize Iranian-Canadian activist Mehdi Samadian has created a petition titled “Irwin Cotler does not deserve nomination for Nobel Peace Prize”.

*This article was originally published on yvesengler.

WRITER

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